The Clean Tech News
Orsted: The World’s Largest Sustainable Fuel Project

Ørsted join forces with leading Danish companies for the world’s largest sustainable fuel project.
Ørsted, the Danish renewable energy company, has joined forces with Copenhagen Airports, A.P. Moller – Maersk, DSV Panalpina, DFDS, SAS, COWI and BCG to transition Denmark’s transport sector to renewable energy.

These Danish companies have collaborated to bring together the demand and supply side of sustainable fuels in an industrial scale hydrogen and e-fuel production facility that could potentially become the largest electrolyser and sustainable fuel production facility in the world.

The facility could potentially supply renewable hydrogen for zero emission buses run by Movia and heavy-duty trucks managed by DSV Panalpina. Potentially, the facility can also provide renewable methanol for A.P. Moller – Maersk vessels and renewable jet fuel (e-kerosene) for SAS aeroplanes.

Henrik Poulsen, CEO, Ørsted, views this project as a “defining leap forward for the production of sustainable fuels in Denmark, which will further reinforce Denmark’s role as a global leader in technologies and business models for a sustainable future.”

Thomas Woldbye, CEO, CPH Airport, described this collaboration as “crucial” for decarbonising the transport sector in Denmark. “It also supports the ambition to transition Danish aviation to become completely free of carbon emissions in 2050 and make Denmark a pioneer in the development of future climate-friendly fuels,” Woldbye added.

The partners have planned this project in three parts:
The first part includes a 10MW electrolyser, with the goal of becoming fully operational and producing renewable hydrogen for buses and trucks by 2023.

The second part includes a 250MW electrolyser facility, which will be used to produce renewable hydrogen with sustainable carbon capture from point-sources in the Greater Copenhagen area to produce renewable methanol for maritime transport and renewable jet-fuel (e-kerosene) for the aviation sector. This part of the project depends on offshore wind power from Rønne Banke, Bornholm, which can only be delivered in 2027.

The third part involves offshore wind power from Rønne Banke, which will reach its fullest potential by 2030. This will upgrade the project’s electrolyser capacity to 1.3GW, which has the potential to produce 250,000 tonnes of sustainable fuels for buses, trucks, maritime vessels, and aeroplanes.

Moving away from fossil fuels
Overall, this project, once the electrolyser is fully operational, has the potential to replace 5% of fossil fuel use at Copenhagen Airport by 2027 and 30% by 2030.

According to the press release from Ørsted, currently, the companies involved in this project are in talks with the regulatory authorities to determine the framework and policies needed to move forward with this project, and public co-funding is needed to conduct a full feasibility study of the project.

The project could start as soon as 2021 if the feasibility study confirms that the sustainability initiatives set by this project can be achieved.

Further, the Ørsted press release states that the electrolyser facility will not only enable the partner companies to decarbonise their businesses, but significantly contribute to Denmark’s ambitious goal of reducing carbon emissions by 70% in 2030

Once this project is fully operational, it will be a key driving force for Denmark to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050, setting an example for the rest of the world.

This project reflects Denmark’s determination to continue with its sustainability goals despite the challenges COVID-19 has created for the participating companies.

India: A CleanTech Success Story

The worldwide pandemic will most likely not stop the demand for clean energy in India.
While China is the most populous country in the world with over 1.4 billion people, India is projected to outrun it around 2027 by adding nearly a quarter of a billion people by 2050. As the country’s population is growing fast, so is the demand for energy. Even though India’s fossil fuel energy consumption falls behind only China and the US, the country has also some ambitious goals in the renewables market.

Support from the local government and foreign investors
By having introduced the world’s largest net-zero expansion programme a few years ago, India made a clear statement – the country is determined to supply cheaper energy to its population with as little damage to the environment as possible.

Even if the government’s initial target to achieve 175 GW from renewables by 2022 (to compare, the current renewables capacity is 83 GW, 31 GW is under development and 35 GW of tenders pending auction) is most likely not viable anymore due to the global pandemic spread. In spite of the consequent economic downturn, India’s energy transition is still promising.

Some experts argue that despite the current challenges, the Indian government could still execute its target of 450 GW of renewable energy by 2030. Interestingly enough, Ray Wood, the head of power, utilities and renewables at the Bank of America, said India could benefit from the coronavirus pandemic as the “outbreak could cripple the Chinese economy” which can result in great interest for “Indian paper in offshore capital markets”. Having said this, the shape of energy transition will depend on the growth of the Indian economy and the speed of renewable deployment.

Currently, India is among the top-five clean-energy producers globally. A significant amount of local and foreign investments have undoubtedly pushed the growth of the renewable energy sector. It has received around $50 billion of investments since 2014 of which almost 15% was from foreign direct investment.

In addition, falling renewable energy prices and new technologies, a favourable policy environment and government reforms make India attractive for investors in clean energy. As a result, it is estimated that India’s renewable energy sector could attract another $10 billion of investments a year.

Young enterprises are leading the way towards better and cleaner future
A changing landscape in the energy sector and a push from the Indian government has boosted a number of startups operating in the cleantech space. While a great part of these enterprises are driving innovations and competition in the solar and wind energy sector – with ReNew Power being the most prominent Indian unicorn built on green energy – some of the country’s public and private institutions are also supporting young businesses that are deploying clean energy-powered livelihood appliances.

Such initiatives are aimed at solving the challenges around reliable electricity which impact the livelihood opportunities and incomes of households. In fact, India has an untapped market worth more than $50 billion for clean energy solutions for rural livelihoods.

Even if Covid-19 is testing the business models of the best startups, the demand for clean energy is set to rise in the long run, so will the need for innovative enterprises.

For more information on the evolving cleantech revolution in India, please see articles on the right to energy movement, how India is democratising access to energy, and how Indian innovation is empowering rural communities.

SINN Power: World’s First Ocean Hybrid Platform

German clean energy company, SINN Power, which specialises in wave energy technology, has developed the world’s first floating ocean hybrid platform.
The floating platform utilises the natural setting around it, as it is placed in an undisturbed part of the ocean, to generate renewable energy and electricity from the ocean, sun, and wind. This makes this hybrid platform a powerhouse of renewable energy.

According to a press release from SINN Power, the goal of the company is to make this ocean hybrid platform internationally available as a complete off grid renewable energy solution.

This can provide coastline countries with all three types of renewable energy: hydro power, solar power and wind power from one platform.

Uniquely, the floating platform can be customised to maximise on the climate conditions of any location it is placed in.

Dr. -Ing. Philipp Sinn, CEO SINN Power, explains: “Modularity has been a key aspect since we started developing maritime technologies which allows flexibility and a wide variety of applications. The floating platform can supply renewable energy to island resorts in the Caribbean and contribute to the worldwide implementation of offshore wind farms.”

He continues, “SINN Power is the first to offer a customizable energy solution using waves, small wind and PV according to climatic conditions of any location and at competitive prices compared to other proven technologies.”

Providing clean energy to coastline environments
According to SINN Power, intensive, long-term tests of the hybrid platform show that the platform can withstand waves of up to six meters high.

This means the SINN Power floating ocean platform can provide coastline countries, which face the harshest sea weather, with renewable energy and ocean energy.

Not only does this provide people living in coastal areas with clean energy, but it aids in sustainable development. This also creates new opportunities in the renewable energy global market.

Before COVID-19, SINN Power, planned to offer solar panel manufacturers the opportunity to demonstrate and test their PV modules on a floating hybrid platform at the breakwater all in Iraklio, Greece, where, SINN Power are currently testing and developing the SINN Power wave energy converter modules.

About SINN Power
In 2014, Dr. -Ing. Philipp Sinn used his knowledge from years of academic research to create the specialist wave sustainable energy company, SINN Power.

The main goal of the company is to transform the unlimited power of ocean waves into clean, cost effective energy that anyone can access.

Since 2015, SINN Power has been designing and building progressive wave energy systems. Just five years later, SINN Power, has created high-tech generators, power electronic components, and energy storage for wave energy systems and other renewable energy systems.

Overall, offshore renewable energy platforms seem to be progressing renewable energy initiatives to phase out global fossil fuel. As a result, increasingly more sustainable energy companies are exploring this platform to generate renewable energy.

CleanTech News is unthinking the solar energy industry with Tor Valenza AKA ‘Solar Fred’

In conversation with CleanTech News, Tor Valenza AKA Solar Fred, Founder of Unthink Solar, shared the importance of marketing for the solar industry, the challenges the solar industry is currently facing in the US, and more.

  1. In your own words, what is Unthink Solar?
    UnThink Solar is a boutique marketing and communications firm for solar, energy storage, and cleantech. When I started working in solar in 2008, solar was still stuck in marketing 1.0. There was very little happening with social media, content marketing, and video. So the name came out of my wanting the solar companies to not just RE-think their solar marketing strategies, but to step back and Un-think everything they’ve been doing, then start with fresh approaches to marketing, communications, and public relations.

UnThink Solar’s mission statement is to “Be bold for solar. Stand out and educate.” That’s important because I’m not calling for solar companies to just pull stunts. I’m encouraging them to sure, pull stunts, but if you’re that bold, then those stunts have to have a point. They should be educational, and the people seeing those stunts (hopefully recorded on video) will say, “Ah, I get it. That means something to me and I agree with your company, and yes, your solutions resonate with me, so I’ll content you and/or tell my friends about you.”

That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t also do traditional PR, social media, and content marketing. To make a difference these days and stand out from competitors, you need to do both.

  1. What is the importance of marketing in advancing Solar power in the U.S.A?
    Solar is still just 3% of the U.S. grid, and that includes utility solar. If we’re going to get to 100% renewable energy one day and mitigate the worst of climate change, we need to inspire the public, businesses, utilities, and our national government to transition to solar and other renewables as quickly as possible. Great marketing and public relations that make people care can accomplish that goal.

The U.S. needs successful solar manufacturing and development to grow jobs and installations. Great marketing helps both small and large companies to grow. In the business-to-business segment where I specialize, many manufacturers and solar developers feel like they are a commodity, where their customers only care about price. Great marketing and communications are important for making prospective customers realize that solar panels, inverters, and other equipment are not alike, so the price isn’t the only thing that matters. These brands have to communicate about their unique added value features that may cost more but are worth it.

  1. What challenges do you think the Solar industry faces in the U.S.A?
    Right now, the biggest challenge that the U.S. Solar industry faces is an anti-clean energy Trump administration that continues to support fossil fuels more than renewable energy. We’d all like to think that there’s a level playing field, but that’s not the case. Policies can make a huge difference in growth.

Certainly, we’ll still grow but it will be at a slower pace under the Trump administration’s policies that attempt to boost coal, oil, and gas at the expense of solar.

The other challenge is our COVID-19 economy. Credit is tighter and home and business owners may be less inclined to take on debt to go solar. There are other financing methods, such as solar leases and solar power purchase agreements, but these also require great credit. With more people out of work in the U.S. and businesses failing, there will clearly be a smaller pool of creditworthy residential and commercial customers. The same go for cities, counties, and states that are receiving less tax revenue, constraining budgets.

The only sector that won’t be affected as much will be utilities. People always need to keep the lights on, and their phones charged, so their revenues will largely remain stable. The only question is their commitment to going solar sooner than later and potentially stranding coal and gas plants.

CleanTech News is unthinking the solar energy industry with Tor Valenza AKA ‘Solar Fred’ – CleanTech News
Tor Valenza

  1. Do you think the Solar industry has a role to play in the economic recovery of the U.S.A post-COVID-19?
    Absolutely. The solar, wind, energy storage, electric vehicle, and electrical transmission industries should all be leading on creating new jobs that help us to quickly transition to non-fossil fuel energy production, infrastructure, and transportation. The only question is whether our national, state and local leadership will support that goal… and working at some very complicated and important details with legislation and regulations.
  2. What do you think the future holds for Solar energy in the U.S.A?
    There’s no question that solar installations in the U.S. will grow. Our transition is already happening faster than anyone predicted when I started in 2008. If I look into my Solar Fred crystal ball, I predict warp-speed rapid growth if Biden is elected. If Trump wins another four years, U.S. solar installations will still grow, but to use the same Star Trek analogy, it will be on “impulse power.” Nevertheless, full steam ahead, Scotty!
  3. Unthink Solar helps Solar energy companies create business strategies. Why do you think this is important?
    Marketing strategies support business goals. I like to think of goals as mountain peaks and strategies as the different paths that can get you to that peak.

There are numerous paths to get to the top of the mountain. Some are easier than others. Some are more expensive than others. Some take more time than others. And some paths lead to a dead-end, and you’ll never make it to the top, so you need to “UnThink” your strategy and start up the mountain again.

Tactics—PR, blogs, newsletters, SEO, web design, branding, messaging, advertising, customer service, etc—are the tools you use on your chosen path. You can use all of them or a selection of tools. The right combination will get your business moving along to the top of the mountain. The wrong combination or misuse of those tools may cause delays getting to the top, even if your chosen and thoughtful strategic path was clear.

Consequently, you need to have both great, creative strategies, good tools, good people who know how to follow the plan and use those tools, and then strong, great execution to make it to the top without, you know, weather delays, COVID19, and other unexpected boulders that unexpectedly come along.

Scottish Green Businesses Get £62m Boost From Gov’s Energy Transition Fund

The Scottish Government launched a £62 million Energy Transition Fund to support renewable energy businesses in Aberdeen, Scotland, in wake of COVID-19 and oil and gas price drops.
The projects that could benefit from the fund include the Energy Transition Zone, business park, in Aberdeen South Harbour and the Aberdeen Hydrogen Hub, which furthers renewable energy initiatives, particularly green hydrogen in the transport sector. The fund will also support innovation projects launched by Net Zero Solution Centre, which is part of the Oil and Gas Technology Centre.

Jenny Laing, Co-Leader of Aberdeen City Council Councillor, views the fund as a vote of confidence in Scotland’s green energy policies: “This is a first step in delivering on our priority of ensuring Aberdeen is at the forefront of Scotland’s ‘green recovery’ whilst demonstrating the importance of the city region to the UK’s and Scotland’s success.”

Laing, continues: “A commitment to combating climate change was the central theme of this year’s Council budget and, building on that, the Council approved a Net Zero Vision and Strategic Infrastructure Plan for Energy Transition.”

The fund also fuels the drive for net zero carbon emissions in Scotland. Laing, comments:

“To have secured funding so quickly to advance these projects is clear recognition that Aberdeen City Council is leading the way and a model for the drive towards net zero carbon emissions.”

The Aberdeen Hydrogen Hub will build on Aberdeen Council’s previous green hydrogen transport investment and maximise on significant large-scale offshore wind resources, supply chain expertise, and hydrogen storage capability.

Significantly, The Energy Transition Zone is expected to accelerate the development of carbon capture technology and renewable energy, particularly offshore wind and green oil and gas production.

Douglas Lumsden, Council Co-Leader Councillor, explains why the Energy Transition Zone is particularly significant for Scotland’s transition to renewable energy: “The inclusion of the Energy Transition Zone recognises its significance as a transformational project for the Scottish and UK economy. We anticipated its national importance in March with its inclusion and a policy for an energy transition zone in the proposed Local Development Plan.”

Lumsden, also comments on the importance of renewable energy on job creation in Scotland: “Our Net Zero vision and Infrastructure Plan provides Aberdeen with significant opportunity to safeguard skills, jobs for our young people and retain and attract new talent and investment here in Aberdeen, as do our plans for a Hydrogen Hub.”

Lumsden, views Scotland as “an economic powerhouse” and these renewable energy initiatives, which have the funding to be implemented “will help maintain [Scotland’s] global position as a major energy city.”

Scotland is making impressive progress in the renewable energy sector and showing the world that Scotland is a force in renewable energy that can help the UK reach the goal, set by the government, to reach zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Sindicatum Renewable Energy Fuel Renewable Energy Initiatives in Asia

Sindicatum Renewable Energy, based in Singapore, took major green steps in 2018 and signed a $60 million green bond deal with GuarantoCo Ltd.
The green bonds were used to fund the construction and acquisition of Sindicatum Renewable Energy’s solar and wind power projects in India and the Philippines.

The transaction of the green bonds was in Indian Rupees (₹) and the Philippine Peso (PhP), but was settled in US Dollars ($).

GuarantCo Ltd, provided investors with a 100% guarantee for a total of $60 million investment divided into three: a $15 million five-year Rupee tranche, a $25 million seven-year Rupee tranche, and a $20 million 10-year Peso tranche.

Assaad Razzouk, CEO, Sindicatum Renewable Energy, said: “We are delighted to have successfully completed this landmark Philippine Peso-denominated green bond.”

Lasitha Perera, CEO, GuarantCo, said, they started with the first 10-year local currency green bond transaction from South East Asia and this “most importantly will support green field projects in the Philippines.”

Since then, Sindicatum Renewable Energy has used green bonds to grow their renewable energy portfolio primarily in the Philippines.

Sindicatum Renewable Energy’s latest solar energy project in the Philippines
Sindicatum Renewable Energy with its partners, Armstrong Asset Management and Mabalacat Solar Philippines Inc, implemented Project Clark, a utility-scale solar PV plant, which has been generating approximately 32,000 MW of clean electricity, annually, since 2016.

Project Clark is located within the former Clark Air Base, redeveloped by Clark Development Company (CDC) to become one of Philippines’ leading economic zones.

Green electricity generated at the plant will be exported to the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) through Clark Electric Distribution Corporation.

The electricity delivered to the grid will mainly supply the locators within the Clark Freeport Zone. The plant is also expected to aid CDC and its parent company, BCDA, in reaching their sustainability objectives.

Sindicatum Renewable Energy’s latest solar energy project in India
Sindicatum Solar Energy opened a 15 MWp solar plant within the Charanka Solar Park, one of the world’s first multi-developer, multi-facility, multi-technology and multi-beneficiary solar parks, located in Charanka Village, Patan District, State of Gujarat.

The plant became fully operational in 2012 and has been successfully running since. Currently, the installed capacity is 350 MW with over 25 developers.

The Majority of the infrastructure facilities at the plant, including part of the lease for the land, roads, power evacuation facility, raw water pipeline, water treatment plant, sewage treatment plant, auxiliary power distribution network, are provided by Gujarat Power Corporation Limited, the Nodal Agency for the development of Solar Park in Gujarat.

The green electricity generated from the project is sold to Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (GUVNL) which is connected to North Eastern Western North-Eastern Grid (NEWNE) of India.

Assaad Razzouk, talked to CleanTech News about corporate sustainability, democratising energy and more in an insightful interview.

Repsol launch two major carbon emission reducing projects

Repsol, Spanish fuel company, announced two industrial decarbonisation projects focused on green hydrogen and biogas.
Repsol has teamed with its Spanish and international partners, including Petronor, one of Spain’s main industrial centres and the Energy Agency of the Basque Government (EVE), a public-sector leader in energy transition, on two projects geared towards reducing carbon emissions in Spain.

According to a press release from Repsol, the first project is building a green hydrogen plant, powered by renewable energy to ensure net zero emissions.

Significantly, water and CO2 are the only two raw materials that will be used in the plant to produce green hydrogen fuel. The nearby Petronor refinery will capture the harmful CO2 directly from the air into the plant.

Repsol Technology Lab research centre will oversee the technological aspects of the hydrogen plant.

According to a press release from Repsol, the hydrogen fuel can potentially be used in combustion engines, currently installed in cars, airplanes, trucks, and other machinery in Spain and worldwide.

Repsol is envisioning this plant to become one of the largest synthetic fuel production plants in the world with net zero emissions, potentially placing Repsol as the leading company in net zero emission fuel production.

Repsol and partners have initially invested €60 million in this green hydrogen production plant and expect the facility to be fully operational within four years.

Repsol Launch Two Major Carbon Emission-Reducing Projects – CleanTech News
Repsol’s process of creating green hydrogen from CO2 and water
The second project: Biogas Plant
Led by Petronor, the second project is a pyrolysis plant that will produce biogas from urban waste.

The biogas will partly replace the fossil fuels used in the production process in the Basque, refinery, one of the largest refineries in Spain.

“With this project, the Spanish industry is positioning itself to become a leading European player in reducing emissions.”

Josu Jon Imaz, CEO, Repsol, said.
Emiliano López Atxurra, Chairman, Petronor, added:

Tthe project unifies three important characteristics in the current situation: a commitment to reduce the carbon footprint, the technological neutrality as a lever; the challenges that the industry are facing in relation to the energy transition; and public-private partnerships as a smart tool for industrial development that will help consolidate a sustainable welfare society.”

Repsol and partners have initially invested € 20 million in this pyrolysis plant and will be located next to the green hydrogen plant in the port of Bilbao, Spain, and its surrounding areas.

This second project implements the circular approach in the production cycle through technology and innovation and joins Repsol’s portfolio of 200 projects, which are already aiding the company’s goal of achieving net zero emissions by 2050.

Initially, the pyrolysis plant is expected to process approximately 10,000 tons of urban waste annually. Its capacity has the potential to process approximately 100,000 tons a year, equivalent to all the urban waste produced in the surrounding area.

Repsol Launch Two Major Carbon Emission-Reducing Projects – CleanTech News
The pyrolysis plant process
These projects are a good example of how the public-private collaboration can aid in achieving economic recovery post COVID-19 and tackle the challenges of climate change.

FuelsEurope: “What’s our place in the future?”

Europe’s oil refiners are dedicated to transforming the refining industry through the introduction of low-carbon liquid fuels with their representatives, FuelsEurope, promising ‘Clean Fuels for All’ by 2050.
FuelsEurope, who represent the refining industry in the EU, Norway, Switzerland and the UK have released their ‘Vision 2050’ promising ‘Clean Fuels for All’.” The plan shows that intermediate CO2 reductions of 100 million tonnes are achievable by 2035, and that low carbon liquid fuels (LCLFs) will contribute to a climate-neutral economy by 2050.

‘Vision 2050’ is a first and foremost a “pathway for the evolution of the refining industry and liquid fuels”. Through this strategy, FuelsEurope has acknowledged the important, enduring role they play in the energy choices of the future, and want to provide low-carbon liquid fuels to complement low-carbon electrons, gas and hydrogen as energy carriers.

Also known as synthetic fuels, LCLFs are sustainable fuels from non-petroleum origins with no or limited CO2 emissions produced during production and use.

John Cooper, Director General at Fuels Europe and Concawe, and Alain Mathuren, Communication Director at FuelsEurope and Concawe spoke to CleanTech News about their new vision and their hopes of steering the oil refining industry towards sustainability.

“We’ve put together quite an ambitious strategy” Cooper said. “It is ground-breaking for us as an industry. […] What we see has changed over the past few years is that the societal support for strong policies and strong climate action has really come on in the last three or four years and we’ve responded to that and challenged ourselves to say: ‘What’s our place in the future?’”

FuelEurope’s place in the future
FuelsEurope: “What’s our place in the future?” – CleanTech News
Mr John Cooper
When asked about FuelEurope’s “place in the future”, Cooper discussed his new, ambitious pathway with CleanTech, showing the passion the organisation has in aiding the EU’s climate neutrality objective by 2050.

“We got there,” he told us, “we worked out how to do this, we’ve done an approximate costing for that, we’ve also worked through how you go through the process of scaling up all the technologies you need.”

With their ambitious targets to transform the transport and fuel industry, FuelsEurope feel prepared to fulfil their goals, Cooper told us concerning this,

“The dream is, we now say, within reach, every vehicle that is on the road or in the sky by 2050 in Europe can be climate-neutral; whether it has got an electric motor and a battery, or whether it’s got hybrid and internal combustion engine, it will run on climate-neutral energy”

We asked Cooper about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the industry, and how a new environmentally conscious world pushing for a green recovery has impacted FuelEurope’s business model.

“We realise that it’s not going to be the same after the pandemic” Cooper began. “We want to propose a really revolutionary set of changes to our industry to be fit for the future. We think we can achieve carbon neutrality.”

What is possibly the most imperative step for FuelsEurope is making their LCLFs attractive to their consumer, in doing this they need to break to the mould of how people think of fossil fuels. Cooper discussed their strategy to change people’s opinion of how the oil refining industry impacts the environment, stating:

“At the moment the main focus is to say: low carbon liquid fuels are within reach, technologically this is possible, we think it’s really valuable to make it happen, let’s make it attractive for the customers. Once you get it right for the customer that’s when the market will really take off”.

Although this new strategy may appear ambitious, in light of their technologies and resources, Cooper remains confident that for FuelsEurope ‘Vision 2050’ is well within reach. Telling CleanTech News they plan to invest €650 billion into their vision, Cooper stated:

“The pilot plans for every one of these technologies exist. […] We’re calling for tough targets with long term trajectory so that everybody in our industry knows this is where we’re going, this is what we’ve got to invest when we get there.”

Tackling challenges for the future of the industry
Possibly one of the biggest challenges faced by FuelsEurope is relaying their message to the CleanTech community and ensuring they are recognised for their efforts towards climate neutrality. Both Cooper and Mathuren stressed to CleanTech News their drive to contribute to the EU’s plans to be climate neutral by 2050.

Cooper stated concerning FuelsEurope place in the CleanTech community: “when people listen to us they think we have got an agenda to try and stop electrification and electric cars, or to try and stop hydrogen cars. We don’t. These strategies are complementary to electric cars and electrification”.

This notion was echoed by FuelEurope’s Director of Communication, Alain Mathuren who stated: “my message is: we are serious and we believe we are a solution because we will address all the gaps that electrification will face”.

FuelsEurope: “What’s our place in the future?” – CleanTech News
Mr Alain Mathuren
Starting with Europe, FuelsEurope is dramatically revolutionising the oil refining industry. Once their vision is executed in Europe, the possibility for growth and worldwide innovation is on the horizon Looking to the future, Cooper said:

“We think the expansion is potentially beyond Europe because at the moment this works in Europe because it is prepared to put the strong policies in place. You can see already there are other regions in the world that are likely to go slower. Where this will work really well is when we can get to the point to export the technology, the business models, the policy models to get a bigger opportunity to everybody”.

Through technological innovation, passion and dedication FuelsEurope are on their way to revolutionising the way we think about the oil refining industry. What ‘Vision 2050’ makes clear is that the organisation is committed to transforming the oil refining industry and in turn, the transport industry’s use of oil and petroleum.

NKT: Utilising Renewable Energy

NKT, the Danish cable company, recently started powering its cable-laying vessel, NKT Victoria, and all its cable manufacturing factories with renewable electricity, reducing its CO2 emissions by 66% compared to last year.
Power cables are essential components for the interconnected power grid, vital for the global transition to renewable energy. As a leading provider of power cables, NKT focused on reducing its own carbon footprint from energy consumption.

The transition to green electricity means that the company saves 48,000 tons of CO2, annually, which is the equivalent of the annual electricity use of 8,148 Danish homes.

President, CEO, NKT, Alexander Kara, said:

“We are taking our responsibility seriously as a key contributor to the infrastructure needed for the green transformation. Running our manufacturing on green electricity is yet another milestone in our ambition to reduce our carbon footprint to ensure that the development of the global power grids is based on technologies with the lowest environmental footprint possible.”

This impactful transition to green electricity was made possible by the company by entering agreements with local utilities that were able to guarantee, that the power supply used in their manufacturing sites in Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Poland and Czech Republic, came from renewable energy sources.

NKT is committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goals
NKT is at the centre of the global transition to renewable energy and in a press release from NKT, Kara stated, NKT is a company that is “committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goals,” and has a “clear vision of contributing to the transition to a future powered by renewable energy.”

Kara, said:

“We are constantly reducing our own environmental impact. I am very pleased that we now cut our CO2-emissions substantially and we will continue to run our business in a sustainable and responsible manner.”

NKT sustainability goals
NKT has a series of initiatives, from which the transition to green electricity is only one, aimed at decarbonising its power cable solutions to further its sustainability goals and its contribution to the global energy transformation.

The company has recycling initiatives specifically aimed at responsibly disposing of its XLPE materials and metals from the production of power cables. They are also working on increasing the energy efficiency of its cable manufacturing.

With the Victoria vessel operating on green electricity, NKT now owns and operates the most sustainable cable laying vessel in the offshore industry.

NKT milestones
In 2018, they helped Energinet construct the vast, Kriegers Flak, offshore windfarm, which has the capacity to deliver green energy to thousands of households.

In 2017, NKT became the first cable manufacturer to launch a tested and qualified 640kV DC underground cable.

In 2012, they produced the largest submarine cable in the world with a diameter of 270 mm. This was a turnkey project in Denmark.

Battrion and Hilti: lithium-ion battery cell prototype promises to be better than industry standard

Battrion and Hilti, in a joint collaboration, have built high-power lithium-ion battery cell prototypes that prove to be better than the industry standard.
In a joint development, Battrion AG and Hilti Group have produced lithium-ion battery cell prototypes based on Battrion’s Aligned Graphite® technology. The cell prototypes show a significant performance increase compared to commercially produced, state-of-the-art cells that are used in power tools.

Battrion is an ETH Zurich spin-off which operates a research lab and production facility where they develop their Aligned Graphite® technology. The technology they develop significantly increases the charge and discharge performance of lithium-ion batteries.

The Hilti Group, who supply the worldwide construction and energy industries with technologically-leading products, systems, software and services, are one of the leading power tool manufacturers. The goal with their collaboration with Battrion is to bring the performance gains achieved through Battrion’s Aligned Graphite® technology to Hilti’s popular power tools.

Dr. M. Ebner, CEO of Battrion has said concerning their close working relationship with Hilti:

Through our collaboration with Hilti, we’ve gained important industrial insights, particularly to the power tool market. The built prototypes mark an important step as they demonstrate external validation of the claims of our technology by a market leader.”

This new cell prototype exhibits an increase in their discharge performance of up to 20% in power tool applications. This substantial increase in performance means the Hilti’s cordless power tools are much more effective.

With other cells designs and application, battery cells with Battrion’s Aligned Graphite® show an increase in discharge performance by up to 40%. Not only this, but this innovative technology reduces the charging time by up to 50% when compared to commercially available cells. The technology means that these improvements are not hindered by further heat generation, extending the time in which the battery can be safely operated.

A close relationship for success
Battrion and Hilti’s working relationship dates back to 2014 when Battrion’s co-founder, Martin Ebner, was awarded the Hilti Prize for Innovative Research at ETH Zurich for his work on lithium-ion batteries. It is this close working relationship that DR. Andreas Bong, Head of Corporate Research at Hilti, believes serves as a role model for technology transfer, stating:

This is further proof of the benefits of long-lasting relationships with leading universities and the openness to collaborate with young startups. Hilti honours and strongly supports research that combines scientific excellence with practical application.”

Through collaboration and long-standing working relationship, Battrion’s and Hilti’s joint development project proves a success. With prototypes that outperform industry-standard, Vice President of Research at ETH Zurich, Prof. D. Günther, has expressed his delight at the success of the collaboration, stating:

It excites me to see when research that originated in an academic setting at ETH Zurich progresses towards industrial applications, particularly in such an important and competitive field as lithium-ion battery technology.”